But here it was. People were stirring. Democracy was in the air. Corporatism and globalism were in their sights. But Gordon, when he found out, hit the roof. He hunted Bree down with the newspaper. When he found her, he was thin-lipped and too quiet. She told us later he was shaking. We all agreed we like it better when he's noisy.
As recalled by many.
But he got over it. Sort of. After all, whose fault was it that our kids knew the world honestly enough to want to "save" it?
Time, 4 pm. He has nowhere else to be but right here. And nobody knows he is here. His tree house. Home sweet home: 1 Wilderness Highway, ha-ha-ha. It's sort of a log house, maybe more of a stick house, one a wolf could blow away, ha-ha-ha, though the wolf would have to climb up this tree first.
There's one little window with a flap. And a big hatch in the floor. Two ways out. Like a rat.
He is squinting in the growing woodsy dark at a Bible. Gift from the captain of his militia, Rex. It has a few glossy color pictures of Bible days. Some people have bare feet, some have sandals. A lot of sun there. Not much for trees. None of them look Jewish. He knows Jewish from school in Massachusetts. These pictures just don't look Jewish. In fact, they don't look human. The kids, that is. They are too chubby, like babies on steroids. Their eyes have expressions like . . . well, not stoned, exactly, more like people do when they are reading dull poetry or Shakespeare aloud in school and they're acting it out in an overdoing way. Bible artists absolutely can't do little kids right. Or Jewish. But especially kids. He thinks about Jesse, not quite two years old. His nephew. Dead. He can hear the wet sticky sound of real live Jesse's mouth slurping down milk or red punch from a cup and the wet sticky sound of his words and phrases and funny ideas.
Most of the Bible kids have wings, or else they are hanging around grown-up Jesus, looking up in his face. Here's one with Jesus patting a little kid on the head. One kid is blond like Jesse was. Mickey thinks, if it were Jesse, he would be holding up a toy helicopter full of brown leaves (helicopter found under the porch) or an old toaster (not plugged in). Jesus would be stuck holding the helicopter while Jesse went off to collect some little army guys or animals to stuff inside. When Jesse got back with his animals and guys, Jesus would hold the helicopter steady while Jesse stuffed.
Before Mickey's eyes, the picture of Jesus and Jesse explodes into the greasy grinding and ernk!ing of the school bus stopping in front of the Locke place. His chest squeezes as if from an attacker's arms meaning to hurt. Yeah, today is the day. SCHOOL IS OPEN. DRIVE SAFELY.
He breathes with relief as the imaginary school-bus door slams and the creepy ark drags itself off in the direction of the fenced-in SAD 51. Yeah, perfect name, huh?